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Economic Impact and Resident Valuation of the Boothbay Region Land Trust

Gabe, Todd and Hudnor, Amy and Finnemore, Luke (2013): Economic Impact and Resident Valuation of the Boothbay Region Land Trust.


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Researchers from the University of Maine examined the economic impact and resident valuation of the hiking trails and surrounding open space preserved by the Boothbay Region Land Trust (BRLT). Based on 500 hours of fieldwork conducted on BRLT properties, the study estimated an overall count of 63,832 preserve uses between April and November of 2012. This count of individual uses translates into 13,081 unique users—251 are year-round residents, 864 are seasonal residents and 11,966 are visitors to the Boothbay region. A survey of BRLT preserve users suggests that those who are visitors to the region spend an average of $73.77 per day while in the area, while seasonal residents who use the BRLT preserves have an average of $57.94 in daily expenditures. The annual economic impact, including multiplier effects, of the expenditures made by BRLT users who are visitors or seasonal residents is an estimated $3.9 million in revenue, 39 full- and part-time jobs, and $1.1 million in labor income. This assumes that the visitors and seasonal residents are in the Boothbay region, at least for the days when the hiking trails are used, as a result of the BRLT preserves. A survey of year-round and seasonal residents of the Boothbay region found that people generally believe that open space is beneficial to the area. Based on the survey results, the study found that residents of the Boothbay region—including year-round and seasonal—have a collective willingness-to-pay of about $1.1 million per mile of hiking trails in the region, which translates into a value of $32.2 million for the 30 miles maintained by BRLT.

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